5 Jan 2018

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The wabi-sabi of the yellow sticker special




Cut flowers are expensive and I only really buy them when they're on sale (anyone else refer to sale items as yellow sticker specials?) This means, of course, that often they're wilting, rotting, or dried out. Shedding petals, these bronze and lilac lovelies were somehow even prettier for it, clinging to the damp cellophane wrapper as I brought them home on New Year's Day.

If photographing flowers is basic, I don't want to be extra.






Oh, and if you've ever wondered what happens behind the scenes at Leedale Towers, it's a lot of this beast getting up in my face / camera / grill...


3 Jan 2018

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A couple of ways of looking at a journey



It is Boxing Day. My mum is driving us to her house from family in Oxford. Outside, it is more or less sleeting. Inside, I am more or less asleep with my eyes open. Lights swing by, arcing and parting in sodium-tinted shades of mustard, mint, ultraviolet, scarlet; some woman on the radio selects bossanova tracks, smooth songs crackling as we pass through high hills that disrupt the signal. In an hour or two I will be in that middle bedroom with its magic, mystic properties of bestowing upon all its guests the best rest. For now we carry on along this somatic tube of road, tarmac thrumming to keep us on the edge of wakefulness.

Another way of looking is to listen. Click the image below or here to hear.





2 Jan 2018

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...and a Happy New Year


This picture hasn't got anything to do with anything really, except that my aim for 2018 is to be reaching upwards with as much quiet joy as this cow parsley, with all the sculptural beauty...but less dead. 

21 Dec 2017

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Merry Light in the Dark Festival to you all!


I'm signing off from work tomorrow and wanted to wish everyone a very Happy Christmas. May your festive break be a red flower and some spangly lights in the deep shadow of the midwinter. 

12 Dec 2017

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Look Up, Look Down, Look Sideways

One of the several hats I wear when I work is that of an arts workshop facilitator. Recently I had the very great pleasure of meeting lots of talented young people at the Museum of London's family festival. Taking inspiration from my interests in walking and digital arts, I encouraged them to look up, look down and look sideways as they travelled around the Museum, taking photographs and tracking themselves using GPS on an iPad. When they returned from their journey we looked at where the satellites thought they'd been and asked whether machines can really know where you are or remember where you've been. Does looking help you find yourself and the camera help you remember? What does your memory look like if you make one picture from it? Below is an overview of the stellar layered artworks I helped them create from their photographs.
Not that I play favourites...but these were some of my favourites.
Because glitter


Can't lie, it's because I was so flattered to be included in this one...(look past the neon skull).
Above and below were created by two sisters from the same walk. I love that they came up with  works that were similar but different from the images they shot together.

The starburst detail of the top image and the additional maps included in this make me very happy indeed.
The children printed off their images to take their art home. They also had the opportunity to further decorate the printouts; I liked the clash of the tactile, analogue world with that of the ephemeral, digital one - and the careful placement of these shiny stickers was so meticulously done!


Afterwards the Museum was kind enough to send me these images as well as the screenshots of the routes everyone walked (or that the bots thought they walked...) 


I am increasingly using walking not only as exercise, but as meditation and as a form of mindful activity aimed at rooting (ha!) myself more fully in my own life. Obviously this then expands into my artistic practice and photographic work because I can't help the one bleeding into the other. I'm making a series of 'walkwork' collages combined with digital drawing and photographs, which you can see some of on my Instagram. I'm not sure whether these 'routes' will be used for anything else in the future or if I will just carry on using them as a jumping-off point but here are several ways of looking at the 33 walks, using a variety of automated editing techniques. 

 
 
I run workshops for cultural organisations and in schools for the most part, but can happily design something for private groups too. Please do get in touch via my website if you are interested in finding out more.